Causathon: Fundraising 2.0

As everyone around me would know, this entire July I have been actively involved in online fundraising for my school project – where 85 students majoring in Public Relations in Murdoch University in Singapore have been assigned to 14 different causes to work with.

My group was to raise funds for AWWA, where they provide seven different services to serve the disadvantaged through programmes for the elderly, children, young people and families with special needs like Down’s Syndrome, cerebral palsy, autism spectrum disorder.

AWWA SMILES boyOur social media strategy is aligned with the Project Reach Causathon’s framing – no sob stories involved. We were mindful to not use photos from the organization due to sensitivity issues – a cartoon of a boy (seen on right) was used to illustrate a typical day at AWWA SMILES.

Our biggest donations were only $54 (not including the $103 from the Starbucks effort), but we had more donors donating in smaller amounts.

Viral Video on YouTube

With the intention to create awareness that about giving back to society and how even the littlest donations make a difference. Money is not our ultimate goal – we were more concerned with changing the mindset of the public, one step at a time.

Wallpaper Downloads
Created wallpapers for download at to allow friends to show support.

Blog Post & Mentions
Fundraising 2.0 Blogpost – Penn Olson is a local social media blog that has a world web ranking of 30,000 and over 100,000 page views per month. It is viewed by not only locals but social media enthusiasts all over the globe.

The article was framed in a way to create awareness about how students are making use of social media to raise funds online, aka Fundraising 2.0.

Twitter Hashtag #projectreachsg
Hashtags are useful on Twitter as they provide real-time tweet updates about the conference. We leveraged on this to monitor our tweets and it has shown our messages were retweeted.

Asking people with more followers to retweet exposure helps to increase exposure and awareness of our message.

Electronic Direct Mailers (eDM)
A simple email template was created and forwarded to friends, encouraging them to watch the video and pass it on.

One week later, a second reminder eDM was sent – the message was edited to serve as a reminder.

Facebook Note Tagging
We posted notes and tagged a max of 50 friends within it. It appears that users are more responsive on Facebook than on personal mails as Facebook has a user interface more inviting for conversations.

We had friends who helped to spread the message by reposting them on their own Walls too.

URL Shortener
Using a TinyURL ( allows us to conveniently post the links to friends without having to recall the original, long URL.

Update: 29 July 2010

Our group won! This fundraising journey has been truly amazing for us – from NOthing to SOMEthing.
On July 6th we had $0 and in mere 23 days we have raised $604! It really proves how together, we can achieve more! Thank you all who played a part in making this happen!

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